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Australian Ranked number 1
Heather sport is orienteering! She has had a hectic year firstly heading to NZ to run in the Orienteering World Cup, originally named as a reserve, but received the call up to mix it over the ditch with the world’s best. This is a senior team, Heather is still a junior, so the event was a major step for her in a field of very high standard. Before the NZ World Cup event she took on the Kiwies in a 5 race series in Victoria, then a another race “Sprint the Bay” straight after the World Cup it was a busy month….
Junior World Orienteering Championships was held in Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic, 7-14 July 2013 and Heather started this campaign with 2 weeks in the Czech Republic of specialized training on the local terrain, she was feeling well prepared for JWOC. After many months of training with this event as the major goal, it was finally time. With 157 girls competing, representing 39 different countries, the competition was looking good.
Long Distance Championships: 7.1km / 470m climb / 15 controls – 90th Place, ahhh. She was quite disappointed with this result especially considering it had felt like quite a good run. With very minimal time lost in mistakes the race was mostly a physical challenge with an incredible amount of climbing over that distance. Looking are her tactics there and based on her strengths maybe to chose the wider route with less climb would have been the better option, but regardless it was a hard tough race.
Middle Distance Qualification: 2.8km / 90m climb / 12 controls – 20th place in heat! Heather had a very good run. The terrain was very technical but she managed to navigate cleanly at high speed (had one mistake which cost about 40seconds, but recovered well) and achieve a result good enough to qualify for the A final! This had been a major goal for the Championships so she was super stoked to qualify.
Middle Distance Final: 3.6km / 110m climb / 14 controls – 53rd place. Unfortunately this was a tough run for Heather here and she made several mistakes in some exceptionally challenging terrain. She was still very excited to be in the A final and gained so much experience from it. Heather recalls, It was so strange to see so many television crews on boulders in the forest and electrical cords going everywhere as you ran.
Sprint Distance Championships: 3.0km / 55m climb / 24 controls – MP. Her run was quite up and down here and made a large error at the start costing 30seconds, however the majority of the race she felt very much in control. The running speed was not too high to ensure clean navigation through some tricky sections and unfortunately though she mis-punched and accidentally missed one of the control points. Disappointed Heather was pleased to know that she was still running at a good standard.
Relay Championships: 4.8km / 100m climb / 21 controls – 28th Place. The championships were hard and now she felt extremely tired after such an intense week, but Heather was happy to finish off with a good run for the Australian girls team. “I got to run the last leg with the task of chasing down New Zealand!”, although she caught up some time, differing route choices meant the Kiwis beat them narrowly. It was still a great experience to run against so many countries.
Next on the trip was O-ringen, Swedish Orienteering Carnival 20 – 26 July 2013 which had some very long and demanding courses, amazing terrain and an incredible experience. This is the biggest orienteering event in the world with over 20,000 competitors most years. This was Heathers first time experiencing an orienteering competition of this magnitude and despite being incredibly exhausted from weeks of training and competing overseas she certainly got a lot out of it.
- Australian Orienteering Champs – Elite Sprint: 2nd Australian
- Australian Orienteering Champs – Elite Relay: 1st Aus Team
- National Orienteering League Race 1 – 3rd Place
- Qld Adventure Race Champs – 3rd Place: elite category
- TrailACT open long course (15km)
Current Australian Junior Elite Ranking: 1